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Chitungwiza Municipality IT Technician Arrested for Stand Ownership Fraud

Chitungwiza Municipality IT Technician Arrested for Stand Ownership Fraud

Chitungwiza Municipality’s IT technician, Lorrie Motsi, was arrested by the Zimbabwe Anti-Corruption Commission (ZACC) yesterday and appeared in court for allegedly fraudulently changing the ownership of a stand without the authorization of the municipal council.

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According to the prosecution, Motsi manipulated the Chitungwiza Municipality billing system by removing the name of the legal owner and replacing it with another individual who had obtained the stand illegally. The charges against Motsi include abuse of office.

Harare regional magistrate Mrs. Marehwanazvo Gofa granted Motsi bail in the amount of US$200.

The state’s case dates back to 2008 when Abigail Chipetekure joined the United We Stand Cooperative. In 2009, after fulfilling her subscription payments, she was allocated stand number 31307 Unit A, Seke, Chitungwiza. Chipetekure completed all the necessary paperwork with the Chitungwiza Municipality and received an allocation letter on February 4, 2009.

On March 4, 2009, she entered into a lease agreement with the municipality and was issued a certificate of occupation. Chipetekure diligently paid rates to the Chitungwiza Municipality from 2009 onwards, although she had not constructed any structures on the stand.

In 2016, Chipetekure discovered unauthorized developments taking place on her property. When she confronted the person responsible for the work, she was informed that they were the rightful owners as the Chitungwiza Municipality had allocated the stand to them.

Chipetekure sought clarification from the Chitungwiza Municipality and was informed that the stand still belonged to her and that the individual developing it was acting unlawfully.

However, in September of this year, Chipetekure checked with the municipality again and found that the stand was now registered under the name of Noriji Zuze, the person responsible for the developments. Disturbed by this discovery, Chipetekure reported the matter to ZACC.

Subsequent investigations revealed that Motsi had illicitly altered the Chitungwiza Municipality billing system, removing Chipetekure’s name and replacing it with Zuze’s.

Motsi failed to follow the proper council procedure, which requires documentation justifying a system change to pass through the registry and housing departments before reaching the IT department for implementation.

Within the stand’s file, there is no evidence of any documentation supporting the change that went through the council system.

Motsi’s arrest and subsequent court appearance shed light on the alleged fraudulent practices that led to the illegal transfer of stand ownership. The case will proceed as Motsi faces the charges brought against her.